Backmarkersf1 alternate WDC standings after the Singapore GP

Posted: October 5, 2011 by thevillainf1 in Uncategorized

While the real WDC is still extremely exiting –ahem- with Vettel failing to clinch the title in Singapore and Button needing a Tonya Harding moment to still stand a chance, in the backmarkers f1 top dogs wdc standings the young German can already officially be crowned WDC as he now has an unassailable lead of 61 points with just 50 points left up for grabs. As suggested in the Monza podcast, I will from now on just ignore he even exists for the rest of the season and make the end of season a fight to the death with my man Button currently creating some breathing space to his closest rivals with some stellar drives these past races.

WC. That guy up front waving fingers who will no longer be named – 117

1bis. Button  56

2. Alonso 52

3. Webber 52

4. Hamilton 48

5. Massa 12

While it should not be forgotten that without the safety car he would have never even got close to Vettel, Button and Mclaren should be praised for going all out with some banzai quali laps at the end of the race trying to catch him against all odds. Sadly, traffic ruined what could have been a crazy Canada-esque last lap challenge…not the first time Barrichello has done some strange things under blue flags this year I might add. That said, Mr consistent Fernando ‘ eyebrows’ Alonso is still close on his tail with 52 points, tied with Mark ‘ I make starts like Asian student drivers’ Webber. While he is already failing in qualifying about half a second or more adrift of his teammate and letting the occasional Mclaren or Ferrari ahead, his starts are what’s really killing him this year.

This year in Singapore, like last year, Webbo was going to have a big impact on Lewis’ race. Another poor start saw him fall into the clutches of a fast starting Hamilton, but Webber cleverly boxed him in and this was the key moment which started another horror race for Lewis. Dropping from p4 to p8 as a result of this, I already sat there with clinched butt cheeks as he breezed past the Mercedes cars cleanly but once he got on Massa’s tail the red mist came down again. While it was just a racing incident which probably should not be penalized the onus was definitely on Lewis, as he stupidly broke his wing on Massa in an overly optimistic move around the outside at the same turn where he got taken out by Webbo the year before.  Ferrari –again- showed themselves from their pettiest side with the infamous radio comm to Massa instructing him to ‘destroy Hamilton’s race’, I guess you could say they succeeded, but I bet what happened is not exactly what they had in mind.

While Hamilton bounced back helped by the safety car and some great moves after inexplicably – seriously Mclaren wtf – running an extra lap with a broken nose and serving a DT to still finish 5th, Massa was back to his old average self and could not make any headway in the pack after losing a lot of time with the puncture, finishing 9th which again earns him no points in our standings. What I found most intriguing about this whole episode is that it offers us another look into Ferrari strategy where Massa continually gets sacrificed to protect Alonso, as discussed in my previous blog post.  Webber drove pretty anonymously to third despite two nice passes on Alonso, but seeing the vastly superior grip the red bull had over the Ferrari all weekend the passes lose some of their shine imo. Anyway, starting from p2 Webber should just never let himself get caught behind a Ferrari in the first place.

 

1. Rosberg 209

2. Shumacher 168

3. Sutil 137

4. Di Resta 128

5. Kobayashi 123

6. Petrov 119

7. Heidfeld 116

8. Buemi 103

9. Alguersuari 91

10. Perez 66

11. Barrichello 60

12. Maldonado 34

13. Senna 14

 

With another strong drive by both Force Indias the battle for best of the rest shows no signs of letting up in the midfield. Rosberg extended his lead to his teammate after losing out in the last two races with a solid 18 points for 2nd place, and a DNF for Michael all but assured Rosberg of the WDC midfield title. However the fight for third is far from over, as Di Resta now joins the fray with a full 25 points haul after a superb race in Singapore. Sutil is not giving up without a fight as he scored a solid 15 points coming home 3rd  to remain in third place in the standings, albeit it now only 9 points ahead of his rookie teammate.  After a string of mature drives where the young Scot outraced his teammate, the gap is definitely shrinking.

Renault’s abysmal weekend- being outraced by a Lotus of all cars –  has seen Petrov fall from 4th to 6th, as Kobayashi managed to grab 4 more points to edge ahead of the Russian, despite being outpaced by his teammate Perez who grabbed 12 points for fourth. Still, Perez is too far behind to still be able to make an impact in the standings after missing 2 races following his Monaco crash and some bad luck combined with rookie errors in other races. Despite his disappointing points tally, Perez remains impressive and will be one to watch for the remaining races to see if he can join the Toro Rosso squabble. Alguersuari’s DNF allowed Buemi to put more space between them again as he leads his teammate by 12 points going into Suzuka. Further down it was a rare occasion to see both Williams drivers grab some decent points with Maldonado now gradually getting on top of race pace, something he was sorely lacking in the first half of the season.

Senna also suffered from Renaults’ horrid weekend as he finished ahead of his teammate grabbing a mere 2 points. Had he not broken his front wing early on in the race he could have ended up a bit higher up the order, but the Renault was in no way in contention during this GP. While in the real standings Force India still trail Renault by some 20 points, here in the backmarkers universe they have emerged as the clear number 2 in the constructors to Mercedes. Those early double podiums are currently the only reason Renault is still ahead in the real world, but the team is definitely under pressure for that 5th place in the WCC. With reports of the team already struggling for money, 6th instead of 5th will be another blow to their 2012 budget.

 

1.Kovalainen 78

2. Trulli 71

3. Glock 56

4. D’Ambrosio 55

5. Liuzzi 24

6. Ricciardo 16

7. Khartikeyan 11

8. Chandhok 2

 

The Trulli-Kovalainen Team Lotus battles continues to seesaw, with Kovi now edging ahead after taking full advantage of yet another Lotus DNF for his teammate and snatching up the 10 points to now lead by 7 points. Jarno Trulli had made a lightning start and was on course to finish higher than Kovalainen had he not encountered another failure and some bad luck. Even before his gearbox gave up, he already had one of the STRs slice a rear tire..indicative of how far up the field Trulli was racing. Team Lotus must really continue to improve reliability as that, combined with a lack of KERS and a far from optimal DRS system (this was discussed on the renaultsportf1 podcast, the engineer revealed the Lotus DRS was some 50% less effective compared to the top teams) is really their Achilles heel which is preventing them from joining the midfield for good.

Similar to what happened at TL, the trailing driver of the Virgin pairing D’Ambrosio managed to take full advantage of his teammate crashing out and Trulli’s DNF to claw back the gap to only 1 point. D’Ambrosio may not be setting the world alight and he is quite a bit off Glock’s qualifying pace, but he rarely ever puts a wheel wrong and we have seen little to no rookie mistakes from him all season in what is surely one of the hardest f1 cars to drive. Ricciardo managed to outrace Liuzzi again but judging by the HRT being so dependent on DNFs  of their direct competitors to score some decent points, it is doubtful that he’d catch Liuzzi in the standings. The most interesting thing I took away from Singapore for the backmarkers was Lotus truly racing the midfield on merit and one can only hope that this is a sign for things to come, although an alternate backmarkers WDC with just Virgin and HRT next season might just be a tad silly. Lotus have recently announced they will have KERS equipped next year. This should further reduce the gap to the midfield and increase the gap to Virgin and HRT, breaking Lotus  out of this year’s no man’s land they so often find themselves in.  3-4 tenths per lap is nothing to sneeze at and would be a huge jump forward in itself …if Lotus manages to make it reliable.

Please excuse the lack of a fancy schmancy gfx image of the standings this week, as those who follow me on twitter know, I’m in Nigeria now, and the interwebz –or lack thereof- are killing me.

Comments
  1. JMD says:

    Well, I’ve liked this blog all along as it presents very well the running classes on today’s F1 grid.
    I find myself still hugely interested in 2011 but I’m an F1 fan so go figure.

    Even though the obvious will be crowned this weekend, the other battles are also interesting for me.

    From the back of the pack, the Team Lotus “soon to be Caterham anyone??” intra team battle is delicious to watch ” or read about as FOM TV coverage often limits the coverage of the lesser teams”.

    The battle seems likely to continue next year too. Tony’s team bringing the Lotus name back to F1 will somehow always be the real Lotus team for me. It’s kinda sad that power and politics get’s in the way.

    I’m not sure I can ever consider Renault Lotus in the same light but there is the rookie battle that makes them interesting for me. Of the rookies, I’ve been impressed with Senna and Di Resta overall but feel somewhat worried for Di Resta …. I’d like to see the Scot win the battle of the Rookies as he’s a capable racer as he proved last year in the DTM, a championship which is alot more closely fought over. I wonder if he’s done enough to take that rookie title in F1. I think he has. Senna cannot compete on points basis but he can more than compete on weekend terms and normalised out, Senna’s performances match Di Resta. I’m less interested in the other rookies presently; they have not caught much of my attention. Perez cannot be ignored though much, can he?

    I’ll say it here also that I want to see MB on the podium still this year and that may not happen but I’ll try to keep watching. I’m a MB fan at heart and I think Rosberg is a driver whose stock value has rocketed quietly. MSC needs to deliver, [already I can hear you say]. When I look back at MSC joining Ferrari, it was not instantaneous either however but there were some podiums occurring.

    At the sharp end, Massa is clinging onto his place in this list thanks only to the fact that he’s in a red car.

    On talent alone, he’s probably more of a mid fielder in 2011.

    Writing is on the wall and I’ve made my points in the Steve other blog on the Massa topic where I’ve been dastardly enough to disagree our man in Nigeria. Massa has a position of privilege and should not squander it in 2012.

    His career never got back after his spring in the head accident and life has tough realities that he needs to accept. Ferrari clearly is not a fertile resurrection ground for him is it, and in any case Ferrari have already made their decision, I’ll wager.

    Hamilton is the odd one out in that leading pack as he’s somewhat still off the rail tracks based on his Singapore exploits. The media will have a field day with him and love him for it [False love as they burn just as quickly when it suits them]. He’s trading heavily his rep from past performances and he’ll empty his account quickly if he basically does not cope on. He has lots of fan ready to explain away his every error and re-direct the blame onto others.

    Reading BBC comments to Murry’s latest Q&A, aside from the complaints at the BBC’s avoidance to answer any TV rights questions [a UK specific issue], there are still fans who appear happy to place all the blame for Lewis’ on track performances squarely on the team only. This is sicko-fanatic and when they turn, it’ll be bad.

    Here’s the link by they way to Murry’s Q&A, which for me, holds water. http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/murraywalker/2011/10/my_japanese_grand_prix_preview_1.html

    Button remains the hope for me to clinch 2nd spot in the 2011 WDC, but with that, comes increased expectations from me that he delivers big and wins the WDC next year. Of the two drivers in Woking, Button get’s my vote. It’s with a keen eye, that I’ll be monitoring the team in 2012 as I see possibility for significant change in driver line up. Gut feelings and 12 months in advance … yea, probably hot air eh?

    JMD’s top 3’s: [just for reference]

    In terms of team, I’m an MB fan first looking to see this team deliver with McLaren and Tony’s green Team Lotus taking the other spots.

    In terms of drivers, I’m a Button fan, with Di Resta and Senna taking the other spots

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